Sunday, April 13, 2008

Jim Prentice Kills Satellite Deal - The Right Thing for the Right Reasons

This week illustrates another reason why I value Jim Prentice as a politician and a person. The progressive and positive positions he has taken as Minister of Industry is a continuation of his quality governance capabilities. His move this past week to kill a sell off of a publicly paid for Canadian space technology is the most recent case in point.

He is a bright, thoughtful, competent and conscientious man with enormous personal and political skills. He is a former federal Progressive Conservative leadership candidate - and my choice in those days. He is obviously so far above the posturing pettiness and the blatant bullying of the majority of his Reform types CPC “colleagues.”

The proposed sale by Canadian company MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. of our just launched earth observation satellite, Radarsat-2, to an American corporation, Alliant, is wrong at so many levels. Prentice knows this and has moved quickly to do something about it.

We have many issues of Canadian interests at stake here, including our sovereignty over the Arctic that the Americans and others are challenging. Those dealing would be seriously compromised with this commercial deal going forward. We also have the loss of technology that we Canadian taxpayers have paid for in large part…and the company would have pocketed the benefits – not us. Then there is the fact this technology is critical new 21st century infrastructure to boot.

Well done Mr. Minister and keep up the good work - and don’t let antics of the small-minded bullys that seem to be all around you get you down.